Take a stroll down the streets of this city, and you will see what makes South Pasadena such a jewel. Amongst the mature trees are the homes, just as beautiful and natural to the surrounding Southern California landscape. From Craftsman to Spanish and Colonial, these historic dwellings are integral to what makes the city so charming and such a desirable place to live.
There are few who understand the value of these dwellings better than Nott & Associates. As a father-and-son business, this design and build firm is as local as it gets. The late Tom Nott was born in East Los Angeles and graduated from the USC School of Architecture. Tom built his first home in the Monterey Hills, where he lived out the rest of his life.
His son Jeff Nott, grew up in South Pasadena, and now lives in a 110 year old Craftsman home on Milan Ave. Tom taught his 3 sons the business, making it an enterprise that will span three generations. Their dedication to longevity and community goes hand-in-hand with the firm’s notable reputation in the city. Their portfolio boasts over 250 projects completed in South Pasadena alone over the last 30 years, with each project done with the specific knowledge and expertise of what these homes need to keep their historic integrity intact.
As a full-service firm, Nott & Associates takes their clients from concept and design, through interior design, and construction. No matter the scope of the project, what Nott & Associates brings to the table is an eye for detail and commitment to excellence. Historic preservation is key: with any remodel, care is taken to match the details of the original structure as much as possible — woodwork, tiling, iron work and plaster all matched to create a seamless extension to the home.
With the recent changes in state legislation there are new opportunities for accessory dwelling units (ADU). Nott and Associates’ goal with these ADUs is to create new housing that looks like it belongs there, not just dropped there. This attention to detail and preservation is a natural result not only of the firm’s core values, but of their experience building these homes while working with the city’s planning and building department and the Cultural Heritage Committee, not only to gain project approval but to see it through to completion every step of the way.
Nott and Associates’ familiarity with building codes and requirements allows them to navigate the bureaucracy of the local building departments to give the client what they want while keeping with the character of the neighborhood. Jeff Nott says construction is very personal to him, “Your house is a sculpture of you, built out of bricks and sticks”. He wants what he builds to symbolize the neighborhood and meet his client’s needs.
Nott & Associates is here to stay. Since Tom built his home here 50 years ago and maintaining business for 25 years on Mission Street with 3 boys to carry on his legacy and expertise, they will be here to serve the community for years to come. Nott & Associates will continue to meet new challenges and problem-solve with even more experience and ingenuity. One house at a time, they’re taking care of the city they call home.
Feature in South Pasadena Review
Design & Build
“I live here in South Pasadena and I remodeled my home, which is 109 years old,” Nott said. “Typically we’ll reconfigure the whole house, but we try to keep it looking original. That’s something that just comes with years of being in the business — knowing certain patterns, for example. We do research on the house and work closely with the city, various agencies and historic committees. A majority of our work is by referral because we’ve done so much work in the community, and I grew up here so I know a lot of people.”
When it comes to current home design and construction trends, Nott said that home spaces are expanding and more families are building additional dwelling units in their homes.
“From closets to bathrooms, everything is getting bigger,” he explained. “Back in the day, homes were built for a different lifestyle. Blending families is also a big trend with grandparents and other family members coming back to live at home, so we’re adding on to properties whether it’s building another level or separate units.”
For those interested in having work done to their house, Nott recommends making an appointment to schedule an in-person meeting to discuss home goals and other important information.
“First we’ll schedule a meeting to get a feel for each other,” said Nott. “Construction is like a marriage — you have to have chemistry, you have to be reasonable and you have to educate people on what their options are. Once we have an initial meeting and they sign a design contract, then we go through different phases of the process together. We help the clients figure out what they really want, what’s really beneficial to their house and what they can build on their property. Then we work on the interior and figure out if they want certain appliances, what their needs are and so forth.”
Nott & Associates is also a member of the U.S. Green Building Council, whose mission is to transform the way buildings and communities are designed, built and operate, enabling an environmentally and socially responsible, healthy and prosperous environment that improves the quality of life.
Nott and his team stay updated on the newest building techniques and technologies, working with suppliers, subcontractors and clients to build the most efficient and comfortable homes, while keeping aware of the cost and maintenance.
“My favorite part of my job is working with the clients, solving problems, working with my employees and coming up with good designs that people like,” said Nott. “I love the history of this area and I like working with the people who live around here. They really enjoy and appreciate old houses and have a lot of pride and ownership when it comes to their homes. People enjoy our degree of service and competence. We’ve been doing this for many years, so we’ve seen and dealt with all types of issues that arise during the redesign and building process. It’s important to learn what people want so we can help them create their dream homes, while at the same time preserving the character of the old houses.”
Nott & Associates is located at 1508 Mission St. in South Pasadena. It is open Monday to Friday from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, call (626) 460-6174 or visit nottassociates.com.
Nott & Associates Business Spotlight appeared in the print edition of the South Pasadena Review on 6.28.19. Support Local Business.